Plan of distraction
Romney comments won’t have any lasting effect
Published: Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Updated: Monday, November 5, 2012 19:11
Romney’s “shoot first and aim later” strategy has been perfected in the last few days with a series of “not elegantly stated” comments and bad headlines.
His latest masterpiece came from a leaked video of the nominee at a private donor dinner earlier this year, quoted as saying the 47 percent of people guaranteed to vote for President Obama are people who are“dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims [and] who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them.”
Despite insistence from the media the race is over, this is not the end of Romney’s campaign.
It’s not something Romney hasn’t done before: an off-the-record remark that seemingly alienates part of the country. At this point it’s starting to become routine. So the surprise is more surprising than the comments themselves. Romney has made his stance on the class system and the economy quite clear in the past, claiming he wouldn’t cut taxes on the rich and remarking that he’s not concerned with the very poor (which makes sense considering the “very poor” are part of that 47 percent).
For that to be the remark to ruin Romney’s run, it would have to be powerful enough to turn all his supporters against him. What Romney attempted to say was the people who don’t pay taxes aren’t going to be interested in his plan to make tax cuts, a view most Conservatives share.
The people left attacking his comments are those on the left, who are already not going to vote for Romney and the “leaners,” who, according to Rasmussen Reports, are tied between the two candidates at 48 percent.
If the focus of this year’s campaign season is going to continuously be gaffes and off-the-cuff remarks, it’s safe to say Romney should probably throw in the towel.
Even Obama had his own series of slip-ups in 2008. Who could forget such gems as his “57 states” comment or that small towns cling to their guns and religion, another “decision maker” of a comment?
“90 percet of ‘game-changing’ gaffes are less important in retrospect than they seem in the moment,” according to New York Times blogger Nate Silver. If that’s the case, then this is just another distraction in an election year that’s running on the country’s short attention span and short-term memory.
Look forward to the next few weeks of Romney continuously backing and campaigning off the comments. And if you’re looking for a real distraction, don’t ask him how he feels about “dependence upon government”; ask him what he intends to doabout it.